A boy called Ann

Happily, our filters catch most of the unwanted and unsolicited e-mail spam that chokes our system. Every now and then, though, a few slip by. And when they do, I’ll automatically hit the delete button. On extremely rare occasions, though, one or two will actually get my attention because of an interesting angle or offer.

The other day, I received one unsolicited e-mail that caught my attention for all the wrong reasons. It came from Bill Penrod of NSON Opinion Research in Fall River, Massachusetts. Bill’s salutation stopped me in my tracks. It read, "Dear Ann…"

Bill’s spam went on to say that he travels to Boston quite frequently and would like to meet to explore a possible partnership with me the next time he’s in town. How nice of him to offer!

I wrote Bill back to tell him my name wasn’t Ann and that I didn’t work in Boston. Sadly, there was no response from Mr. Penrod.

Not that I have any immediate need to work with a market research company but, if I did, Bill and his NSON Opinion Research bosses should know I won’t be using their firm.

What good is a mass e-mail campaign when it not only generates little response but, in my case, actually damages the sender’s image and reputation?

So, Bill, do give me a call when you’re next in Beantown. Just dial our main number and ask for "Annie." I actually prefer that to just plain "Ann."

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